Institute for Aerospace Technology

Technology and research


The Institute for Aerospace Technology and the Faculty of Engineering have an extremely strong record for
collaboration with industry to solve specific technology problems and develop new products. There are a variety of ways we provide assistance and work with companies ranging from short-term consultancy through to long-term research projects. Opportunities also exist to transfer expertise and know-how into a business.

Industry-led research projects

The most common way the Faculty provides technology solutions for industry is via a research project, typically
lasting 1 - 4 years. Funding for a project may come directly from industry, producing specific and confidential results.

The Faculty also undertakes a significant amount of work where projects are subsidised by government funding secured from a broad range of competitive funding schemes such as Technology Strategy Board or European Framework Programmes. We can advise on the most suitable source of funding and help arrange this.

Scientific research projects

The Faculty undertakes a substantial amount of research to develop new scientific understanding of materials,
processes, equipment and phenomena that may bring changes in industrial practice.

All this research aims to be industrially relevant, but is often too early or risky for industry to fund directly. When this occurs, we are able to apply for public funding, for example to the EPSRC. Such applications are strengthened by relevant companies inputting into and agreeing to support the proposed research programme.

Sponsored PhD studentships

Research project are often suitable for a PhD programme of study. PhD studentships are typically 3 - 3½ years long and there may be opportunities for companies to partially offset their cost, especially where a UK student can be recruited. The PhD student will work exclusively on your project, typically spending a placement period with the company (usually a minimum of three months).

Industrial research fellow

A cost-effective method for long-term strategic partners to undertake research with a particular research group is to support an industrial research fellow. Here, the company funds a researcher to undertake various short
and long term projects on their behalf without the need to establish multiple research contracts. The advantages to industry include easy access to group resources, including academic expertise, and other sources of
project funding.


Members of academic staff are able to undertake consultancy for companies and other external bodies from time to time. The University encourages this as it is extremely beneficial in keeping our thinking up to date with the state of the art in industrial practice and in developing new strategic alliances.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) are a government mechanism for applying academic expertise to a development project aimed at improving the financial success of your business. Appropriate projects include
new product development, improvement of existing products and improving operational efficiency. Projects are typically 1 – 3 years long.

Technology licensing

Invention and innovation is at the heart of engineering and our researchers continuously develop new methods
and products which present real commercial opportunities. The University can work with industry to develop the technology in line with the specific needs and requirements of a company. Details of our most current licensing opportunities can be found on the University’s technology licensing website.

Institute for Aerospace Technology

Aerospace Technology Centre
Innovation Park
Triumph Road
Nottingham, NG7 2TU

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